Grassley to hold drug pricing hearing

Grassley to hold drug pricing hearing
© Stefani Reynolds

The Senate Finance Committee's first hearing of the year will focus on prescription drug prices, panel chairman Sen. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleySmaller tax refunds put GOP on defensive High stakes as Trump, Dems open drug price talks Senate approves border bill that prevents shutdown MORE (R-Iowa) announced Tuesday.

The Jan. 29 hearing "will be the first in a series of hearings scrutinizing prescription drug pricing and considering policy and oversight solutions to lower costs for American patients," Grassley said in a statement Tuesday.

"We already know what the problem is. It’s time to look at bipartisan solutions and work to turn them into law,” he added.

The Senate hearing will be the same day the Democratic-led House Oversight and Reform Committee holds the first of its own drug pricing hearings.

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The two hearings on the same day shows the bipartisan nature of the concern over rising drug prices.

Grassley and House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairman Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsHouse chairman: Trump lawyers may have given false info about Cohen payments Overnight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Dems blast rulemaking on family planning program | Facebook may remove anti-vaccine content | Medicare proposes coverage for new cancer treatment Rule change sharpens Dem investigations into Trump MORE (D-Md.) have made rising drug prices a central concern.

Grassley is largely seen as a dogged investigator who backs free-market principles, and is not seen as an ally of the pharmaceutical industry.

He is also willing to work with Democrats. In September he teamed up with Sen. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinDemocrats brush off GOP 'trolling' over Green New Deal Trump praises law enforcement response to shooting at Illinois business Five dead in shooting at manufacturing plant in Aurora, Illinois MORE (D-Ill.) to legislate that television advertisements for drugs be accompanied by price disclosures. The measure was ultimately blocked by House Republicans.

Earlier this month, Grassley laid out his priorities for drug pricing action, including legislation with Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharKlobuchar defends work record: Yes, I am a 'tough boss' Female Dems see double standard in Klobuchar accusations Klobuchar, O'Rourke visit Wisconsin as 2020 race heats up MORE (D-Minn.) that would allow patients to import prescription drugs from Canada.

He has also expressed support for much of President TrumpDonald John TrumpRosenstein expected to leave DOJ next month: reports Allies wary of Shanahan's assurances with looming presence of Trump States file lawsuit seeking to block Trump's national emergency declaration MORE's drug pricing agenda.